Diagnosis and Management of the Metabolic Syndrome
An American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Scientific Statement
- AHA/NHLBI Scientific Statements
- metabolic syndrome
- cardiovascular disease
- lifestyle therapy
The metabolic syndrome has received increased attention in the past few years. This statement from the American Heart Association (AHA) and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) is intended to provide up-to-date guidance for professionals on the diagnosis and management of the metabolic syndrome in adults.
The metabolic syndrome is a constellation of interrelated risk factors of metabolic origin—metabolic risk factors—that appear to directly promote the development of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD).1 Patients with the metabolic syndrome also are at increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes mellitus. Another set of conditions, the underlying risk factors, give rise to the metabolic risk factors. In the past few years, several expert groups have attempted to set forth simple diagnostic criteria to be used in clinical practice to identify patients who manifest the multiple components of the metabolic syndrome. These criteria have varied somewhat in specific elements, but in general they include a combination of both underlying and metabolic risk factors.
The most widely recognized of the metabolic risk factors are atherogenic dyslipidemia, elevated blood pressure, and elevated plasma glucose. Individuals with these characteristics commonly manifest a prothrombotic state and a pro-inflammatory state as well. Atherogenic dyslipidemia consists of an aggregation of lipoprotein abnormalities including elevated serum triglyceride and apolipoprotein B (apoB), increased small LDL particles, and a reduced level of HDL cholesterol (HDL-C). The metabolic syndrome is often referred to as if it were a discrete entity with a single cause. Available data suggest that it truly is a syndrome, ie, a grouping of ASCVD risk factors, but one that probably has more than one cause. Regardless of cause, the syndrome identifies individuals at an elevated risk for ASCVD. The magnitude of the increased risk can vary according to which components of the syndrome are …